University of Missouri

Storing large quantities of energy is one of the greatest challenges facing utility-scale renewable sources like wind and solar. Battery technology has significantly advanced in recent years, but still remains relatively expensive. Researchers have been working on various methods of storing energy, like vanadium flow batteries, and now engineers at the University of Missouri have made a breakthrough that allows them to create and control plasma, which could have wide-ranging implications for generating and storing energy.

“Besides liquid, gas and solid, matter has a fourth state, known as plasma. Fire and lightning are familiar forms of plasma. Life on Earth depends on the energy emitted by plasma produced during fusion reactions within the sun,” MU said in a statement. Keep reading →